S.Korea broadband firm sues Netflix after traffic surge

Owen DeLong owen at delong.com
Mon Oct 11 16:23:43 UTC 2021

> Going back to the fact that it's not the content providers "using" 
> a lot of bandwidth, it's the eyeball customer *requesting* a lot 
> of bandwidth, I think the best approach is for the content providers 
> to help manage traffic levels by lowering bit rates towards eyeball 
> networks that are feeling strained by their users.

This is the model that has pissed me off for decades… Somehow the
cellular carrier networks have been able to force phone application
and content providers to do things like limit the maximum size of file
that can be downloaded over the cellular network and force you to
download certain content over wifi.

Since I maintain a backup handset anyway and it is rarely utilized,
I let it accumulate rollover data until I want to do a large download.
Then I turn on its hotspot and the other phone uses that wifi to
download the large file I wasn’t allowed to download over the cellular
network due to exactly this stupid kind of limitation.

> Instead of a 4K stream, drop it to 480 or 240; the eyeball network 
> should be happy at the reduced strain the resulting stream puts 
> on their network.  

So your solution is to make the content provider punish the eyeball
user and deliver a poor user experience in order to let the crappy
eyeball network off the hook? I don’t think that’s a good solution.
It makes the content provider look bad to the end user and it
shifts the burden from the ISP that got paid to deliver content they
are failing to deliver onto the content provider that is trying to live
up to their agreement with their user.

IIRC, Netflix charges extra for a 4K level subscription these days,
so an end user that paid for 4K service and got 240p because their
ISP managed to force Netflix into a lower bitrate would likely be
pretty annoyed at both Netflix and the ISP if they understood the

> The content network can even point out they're being a good 
> Network Citizen by putting up a brief banner at the top of the 
> stream saying "reducing bit rate to relieve stress on your ISPs
> network".  That way, the happy customer knows that the 
> content provider is doing their part to help their ISP stay 
> profitable...I mean, doing their part to help the Internet 
> run better. 

Yeah, I’d be calling $CONTENT_PROVIDER and asking what I need
to do to get the full rate service I paid for. I’d also be calling $ISP
(or switching $ISP if possible) to one that didn’t have those issues
>  I'm pretty sure this is going to start happening more and more, 
> as ISPs realize that putting content caches into their IP space 
> to serve not only their own customers, but also customers of 
> selected peers can be a source of good leverage in the market. 

Agreed… Caching close to the edge makes complete sense,
especially with aggregated caching models through CDNs.


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